Lately in a coffee meeting with my friend, he was telling me some funny thing. He received a huge encrypted email from his customer, and when he decrypt it, he found that it was a hand type up list of errors his operators made. It hardly look like a generated report.

On the same day, another friend of mine received a message from the customer, demanding legal damages for some addresses key wrongly.

Hearing this stories made me remind myself of this business partner who once threatened me. “Hey, do you know what will happen if you fail to deliver? I will sue your company for LD (Legal Damages),$10 000  a day, until your company goes bankrupt” 

Once there is a business manager calls me, asking me to pinpoint a particular staff to blame for any incidents that happens to my project, and there was once where someone even gave me the authority to fire off all the people who not performing in the operations (that is done with NO replacement)

Assuming that if really we manage to single out the staff that made a mistake. what should the business do? Give the staff a samurai sword to request the staff to perform seppuku? Fire the staff and hire a new staff  thinking that the new staff will not make such human errors? 

This is the effect when business line managers and business owners are people with no war experience, either promoted by accident, or promoted because they have medals such as “MBA” or “Master degrees”. Thinking that true leadership can be taught in the classroom.

It seems to me that many of such business owners run a business process that is very generic, and can be used across all industry. Firstly, outsource their job at a ridiculous low price, with a impossible to reach SLA. Then look for desperate sales managers who are very hungry for sales numbers (or comission) , force them to commit their companies operations staff into this game.

Hire 1 coordinator, who spends all his days documenting the errors. Then call for a lawyer to sue the poor company for legal damages. Such business process requires little capital, only 3 staff, and produces more than 100% profit (Suppose if the LD amount is higher then the outsourcing cost) 

It seems to me that many companies spends their precious human resources in the business of fault finding instead of the business of profit making.  Such endeavour could still be feasible (although unwise) in a time where there are plenty of business opportunities and when the economy is doing well.  But in a uncertain times like this, can businesses still afford such luxury, to commit their human resources into this business of fault finding? Unless we can be sure that the only source of revenue for a business is through her legal department, such effort are a huge waste of human resources.

I believe it is a time for business to wake up, devote the workers precious times and resources into profit generating activities, and cut fault finding activities within the organization.

Many of the projects need not end up in a legal damage case,  if all partners believe in mutual benefit all project issues can be resolved. However, if one party decided to start the business of fault finding, which is the reaason why most partnerships now ends up in a lawsuit. Resulting to business generated to the legal industry, while leaving customers with projects that are half working, doesnt fulfill business objectives and clueless workers who are made to maintain systems that generates alot of reports but not profits.

So, is this business of fault finding really profitable?

If you are a company looking for partners to grow together and to perform profit making processes at a lower price. Make sure the benefit of all parties are covered. Seek to resolve problems before the need to call for a review meeting (AKA Fault finding meetings). 

If your business partner is constantly looking for partners to LD, it is advisable to stay away and search for a new partner to grow together.

In a nutshell, Business of Fault Finding produces the following effect that is demeriting to business
1. Innovation is hampered by fear of being singled out for blame
2. Indecieveness when making critial business decisions (Butterfly effect)
3. Human capital wastage into fault finding activities in terms of “review meetings”
4. Lowering of overall workforce morale, clausing a drop of productivity and revenue

Instead of fault finding activities, contrast this with the benefit of problem solving activities.
1. New efficient ways of performing the same profit generating activities
2. Business issues are solved at the lower echelons level with less fear
of mistakes
3. Less unnecessary escalation of simple business issues
4. Improvement to staff morale and opportunity to redeploy staff to new profit generating activities.